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TheStreet Open House

Americans Taking Advantage Of Ability To Watch TV On Their Own Schedules

Attention, please!

Among those who ever watch TV shows on their own schedule, over four in ten (43%) confirm having certain shows they make a priority to watch before anything else, as soon as they are available. 

  • Having such priorities or preferences is again more common among those under 40 (57% ages 18-29, 59% ages 30-39, 37% ages 40-54, 29% ages 55+) and among those with children under 18 in the household (49% with, 41% without).

For those with viewing priorities, the top factor in what they prioritize isn't a complicated one – it's simply those seen as "My favorite / most enjoyable" (81%).  Other notable, if less dominant, factors include "I can't wait to find out what happens next" (53%) and "It depends on how much time I have to watch" (42%), followed by "I don't want to get behind and risk plot points being spoiled" (37%) and "It depends on my mood" (34%).

  • Women are more likely to be motivated by a desire to find out what happens next (60% women, 46% men), while for men the decision is more dependent on their mood (40% men, 29% women).

Fewer than two in ten (18%) identified a desire to discuss the show with friends, family and/or coworkers as a factor influencing their viewing priorities.

Watch around the clock

Among those watching TV shows on their own schedules, over six in ten (62%) ever binge view.  Both new and old shows contribute to this, with half (50%) bingeing on older shows or past seasons of current shows and four in ten (40%) binging on current seasons of shows.

  • 18-39 year olds (78% ages 18-29, 73% ages 30-39) are more likely than those 40 and older (58% 40-54, 48% ages 55+) to binge view, with 40-54 year olds also more likely to do so than the 55+ set.
  • Those with children under 18 in the household are more likely than those without to binge view current seasons of shows (48% with, 37% without).

The choices between which shows to binge view is driven most by the type of show, with the majority of binge viewers (56%) saying this influences their likelihood to binge view a particular program.  Other strong factors are a desire to catch up to the "live" broadcast (44%) and the genre of the show (43%).  Few (13%) indicate that their choices are driven by the social aspect, such as watching marathons with friends and participating in "watercooler" conversations.

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